Friday, 15 August 2014



3 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, chopped well
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 ribs of celery, chopped well
1 sweet Italian frying pepper, chopped, seeds removed 
2 teaspoons tomato paste
1 (15-ounce) cans tomato sauce
1 cup water
7 fresh tomatoes, peeled, seeds removed, chopped 
or 1 can (28-ounces) whole tomatoes 
2 teaspoons dried oregano
a few sprigs of fresh thyme, a few basil leaves and a little parsley
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese

  • In a saucepan, heat the olive oil and add the onions, celery, pepper and garlic. Sauté until soft. 
  • Stir in the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute.
  •  Add the tomato sauce and water and stir to deglaze the pan.
  •  Add the oregano and thyme. 
  • Add the tomatoes. 
  • Mix, season with salt and pepper to taste, bring to a boil and reduce the heat to low. Cover and let simmer. 
  • After half an hour check the sauce. It should be pretty thick.  At this point add the grated cheese, stir well and cook for another 15 minutes. 
  • Chiffonade the basil leaves and mix them into the sauce. Turn off the heat. 
  • The tomato sauce will be thick, sweet and fragrant: use it up!

Tuesday, 17 June 2014


Mix the fennel, dill, mint, and scallions.
A very nice salad, light, refreshing, simple and quick to make but with lots of flavour. It's a popular late spring-early summer salad at the Greek table. That's the time of year when the ingredients in it can be found at their best and freshest in the garden.  Of course, if your vegetable garden is at the supermarket, as is mine, you can enjoy this salad anytime. Try it in the summer though, because it makes really refreshing hot weather fare.  Here's how it's made:


3 romaine lettuce hearts, thinly sliced
1/2 cup fresh dill, finely chopped
1/2 of a fennel bulb, thinly sliced
1/4 cup fresh mint, finely chopped
5 scallions chopped, use white and light green parts 
about 5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
juice of one lemon
salt and pepper to taste
2-3 tablespoons grated Pecorino Romano cheese


Mix the fennel, dill, mint, and scallions.  

Add the lettuce and mix to combine. 

Season with salt and pepper. 

Toss with the oil and lemon juice, then sprinkle the grated cheese on top.